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ABSTRACT

This study was carried out in order to determine the antimicrobial activity of Pyroligneous
acid (PA) and its anti-oxidative properties. Pyroligneous acid was tested on several pathogenic
microbes which cause skin problems on human beings which are Pseudomonas aeruginosa
(PA), Staphylococcus aeureus (SA), Streptococcus sp (S), Streptococcus faecallis (SF), Candida
albicans (CA) and Microsporum Gypseum (MG).
The process of testing the PA began by screening it on a pour plate of inoculated
microbes. The growth of microbes was observed after the incubation period. It was found that
the Concentrated PA (CPA) of ratio 1:7 showed positive results on all the microbes tested. CPA
was then further tested on the Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) and Minimum
Bactericidal Concentration (MBC) of every microbe by using the two-folds dilution method. The
MIC for microbe PA and SF was measured to be at 0.391% dilution, 0.195% dilution for S and
SA while 12.5% dilution for CA. The MBC of PA is at dilution 0.781% and CA at 12.5%
dilution. Microbe S, SA and SF showed the same MBC of >50% dilution. pH of incubated
microbes was measured 3 times to get the average and the graphs plotted showed an increase in
pH with a decrease in % of dilution. The Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) test was also
carried out using solvent of hexane and ethyl acetate at ratios 10:10, 12:8 and 14:6. In the ratio of
10:10, 2 out of 4 spots showed changes in colour from purple to yellow, while in ratio of 12:8, 3
out of 5 spots showed positive results. The ratio 14:6 have more compound which exhibits anti-
oxidative properties as 3 out of 4 spots showed positive colour changes.
From the experiments conducted, CPA is concluded to be able to inhibit the visible growth
of the microbes tested and kill cultured Pseudomonas aeruginosa at a low percentage of dilution.
This shows that Pyroligneous acid has antimicrobial properties on various skin problem-causing
microbes. The increase in pH of incubated inoculums despite the acidity of PA concludes that
there is bacterial growth outside the MIC and MBC range of every microbe. From the TLC test,
PA is proven to contain compounds which exhibits antioxidant properties.

The study proves that Pyroligneous acid is not only useful in the pharmaceutical industry,
but the fact that it is a waste product from the charcoal industry shows that it is also a cost-saving
material and environmentally friendly.